Mayor's Office Press Release
City Cleaning Homeless Encampments Twice a Week
February 7, 2017 -- More than 156 tons of debris have been removed during 40 separate cleanups of highway underpasses, intersections and parking lots in the Midtown/Museum District area and elsewhere around the City since last October. The cleanups are part of the City’s response to neighborhood concerns about the accumulation of trash and other debris in areas that are frequented by the homeless. The cleanup crews do not remove items belonging to the homeless and no one is forced to leave, however, the Houston Police Department’s Homeless Outreach Team is always present in case anyone chooses to take advantage of available assistance.
“Houston has made great progress in reducing its homeless population over the last few years,” said Mayor Turner. “We will never eliminate it completely, but we can work to lessen its negative impact on our neighborhoods. These cleanups and the ongoing outreach are just a small portion of what will be a comprehensive approach to the problem. I will be announcing additional strategies in the near future.”
Since 2012, Houston has provided permanent housing for approximately 10,000 homeless individuals via The Way Home, a nationally recognized homeless housing and response program. More than 100 local governmental, business, faith, nonprofit and charitable organizations work together under the umbrella of The Way Home to build and manage a single system focused on a “Housing First” approach to homelessness.